As great (and important) as traveling is, there's no denying it can wreak havoc on your hair. From frizz-inducing climates and swims in the ocean to cramped naps on planes and open windows on car rides, there are plenty of ways your hair can become unmanageable when you're on vacation (or simply on the go). That's why it's so important to own one of the best travel flat irons — these genius, pint-sized styling tools are designed to fit in your purse so you can always have a form of hair insurance with you; some are even cordless!
When travel-friendly hair straighteners first came onto the market, they were pretty much just smaller, less powerful versions of their full-sized counterparts. In recent years, however, companies have perfected the technology and design, meaning many of these mini flat irons can stand in for your everyday, at-home straightener. Some of these tools even double as a curling iron or brush; and best of all, they won't break the bank.
Whether you're looking for a teeny, tiny flat iron to tame fly-aways and baby hairs or a heavy-duty, three-in-one tool that pretty much does it all, you'll find the best of the best on this list, below.
1. Best For Short Hair And/Or Bangs: A Mini, Ceramic Flat Iron For Under $10
This little flat iron doesn't sacrifice quality for its small size and cheap price. What it does do, however, is heat up quickly (in under a minute, to be exact) and evenly distribute heat at a constant temperature (up to 365 degrees Fahrenheit), which reduces the risk of breakage and damage. It's made of tourmaline and ceramic, a combination that reduces frizz and increases shine, and its half-inch plates make it ideal for touching up bangs, bobs, and baby hairs. If you have long, thick hair, you might want to keep scrolling, but if you're looking for something affordable to keep your short hair straight throughout the day or after the gym, this is a perfect option.
2. Best For Curls And Waves: A Two-In-One Straightener And Curling Iron That Can Be Used On Both Wet And Dry Hair
RIWA Travel Hair Straightener and Hair Curler
If you know you'll want to have the option to either straighten or curl your hair during your travels, then this dual flat iron and curler is the tool you've been looking for. Plus, it can operate on wet or dry hair — yes, without causing damage! — because of its precisely positioned ventilation holes and layered ceramic makeup. Thanks to the (included) thermal silicone sleeve, it will cool down much quicker than a normal iron, saving you lots of time when you're on the go. The plates measure in at 1.25 inches, so it'll work on any length of hair, and it features dual voltage for worldwide use (as long as you have the proper adaptor).
3. Best For Multitasking: A Foldable, Three-In-One Styling Tool That Brushes, Straightens, And Curls
HONGLIDA Folding Portable Travel 3-in-1 Iron
Not only does this styling tool fold up to 6.5 inches and come with a convenient and cute case for easy travel, but it can also straighten, curl, crimp, wave, or act as a round brush. With a two-level heating adjuster and a dual voltage system for worldwide use (again, with the proper adaptor), this is the do-it-all hair styling tool for those who want to achieve salon-level looks while on the go.
4. Best For Going Off The Beaten Path: An Easy-To-Pack Flat Iron That's Both Cordless and Rechargeable
Huachi Mini Cordless Travel Flat Iron
If you plan on traveling off the beaten path — aka where you won't have access to an electrical outlet — this mini flat iron is the way to go. Not only is it cordless and rechargeable (it comes with a lithium battery), but it's super easy to pack thanks to the size: it measures in at just 8 inches in length. With three easy-to-adjust heat settings, anti-frizz tourmaline ceramic plates, and a cute carry bag that's included, this smart little tool is worth the extra money. You can expect it to heat up in 30 seconds, and it even has a USB charging cable so you can plug your smartphone in!
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